Great! So you have an interest in this special place called Soho (who hasn’t?!) and and are probably wondering whether @PlanforSoho is something you should get involved in.
Eventually, there’ll be more technical stuff to come on this website – planning issues can be very technical – but here’s a simple guide to what it’s all about.
Basically, @PlanforSoho is a way of the local community (residents, businesses, and visitors too) having more say in what happens in Soho.
How does this happen? Through the Soho Neighbourhood Forum, which can do three things.
- Our main priority is to produce what’s called a Neighbourhood Plan, which in our case we call @PlanforSoho. If it is approved in a local referendum then it becomes official planning policy which Westminster Council must take into account when considering planning applications in the area.
- We can take up other issues to promote and enhance the social, economic and environmental well-being of the area.
- We can direct the way Westminster spends some of the money it receives from developers (through something called the Community Infrastructure Levy or CIL).
We’re just beginning to work out what this all means in practice. Maybe we can find ways to improve the air quality in Soho, or make it easier for pedestrians and cyclists to get around, or strengthen the mix of housing available, or … The list isn’t endless, but it is quite long and we would value your input as to what are the most important priorities.
So at the very least, why not join the Neighbourhood Forum so that your voice can be heard? Membership is free, and means your views will help to shape what we do. There are other ways to get involved too. Please click here for more information.